New Irish Manager Martin O’Neill, who took over from former manager Giovanni Trapattoni, must get Ireland to Euro 2016 if he wants to prove he is the man to revive Irish football.
The Northern Irish national will face his first real challenge as boss though when he discovers who the national team will get in the draw for Euro 2016 qualification tomorrow.
The draw that will take place in Nice and will include all UEFA eligible European countries, and as an Irishman obviously I'm hoping for the best possible outcome in Sunday's draw as I am still trying to recover from us not making the World Cup.
Ireland sit in pot 2, which is good news for fans as the country may avoid some other tricky teams in that pot section as Sweden, Belgium and Ukraine.
Although that's one bit of good news for Mr. O'Neill he still faces the prospect of facing some of European football's giants, and in this article I will give to you the group of certain qualification for Ireland but also the group of certain death that the nation could face in a worst-case scenario.
The group of certain qualification: After examining all of the teams in each seed this is the group that i believe if Ireland get we may well not only qualify but also top the group. The group goes like this: (in terms of seeds)
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Republic of Ireland
Of course it is very unlikely that the group will fall in this exact order but if Ireland are matched up against these teams they really do look the strongest there as a squad. Of course Bosnia have qualified for the World Cup but i can't really see them making much of an impact at the World Cup or after it.
Some other countries that Ireland would hope to get include Greece (pot 1), Romania (pot 3), Estonia (pot 4), Georgia (pot 5) and finally Andorra (pot 6). So should Ireland get any of these teams in there group us fans can look forward to European qualification, that's not to say we'll perform well at it though.
The group of certain death: Now I will lay out the group that if Ireland get can already say au revoir to any hope of qualifying for Euro 2016. The group like before goes in terms of seeds:
Republic of Ireland
If Ireland get this as there group in the draw on Sunday it looks very unlikely that Ireland will qualify for the Euro's, although not impossible. With Montenegro proving difficult opponents to Ireland in the past and Iceland looking like an ever improving national team whom narrowly missed out on the World Cup.
We may see the table ending up with Spain and Austria qualifying while Iceland finish third, this will obviously mean Ireland would be out of the tournament but we may see a surprise and even with this tough looking group Ireland could still qualify.
Some other tough teams Ireland may face include Germany (pot 1), Portugal (pot 1), Bulgaria (pot 4) and Poland (pot 3)
Of course this is all speculation and we will have to wait until we get the real draw on Sunday, but it will certainly be a nerve-racking few days for the Irish coach as he may have to come to grips with a very tough group.
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